Classic/Antique Car Repair/1965 Rambler Marlin


got a 65 Rambler Marlin 327 4bbl...started having intermittent starting battery, car is restored, not by me.  now car is dead...has lights but won't start...not even bumps, no noise at all???  any ideas?  all fuses are good

The fist place to start when facing one of these problems is with the battery. Diagnosing electrical problems without a battery in top condition soon turns into an exercise in futility. And don't be fooled by "the lights come on" as the ;ights only take ten or so amps of power to turn on while the starter take up to 200 amps to turn over. So an almost dead battery will turn on the lights. If you do not have a voltmeter and a load tester most local auto parts store will test the battery for you. Also just because the battery is new does not mean that it is good. If the battery checks out and the battery cables are clean and tight and the ground is connected to a good ground on the cars chassis or engine block, check to make sure that there is a ground strap that connects the engine to the chassis. Remember that the engine is mounted in rubber motor mounts that will not conduct electricity so the engine block and the chassis must have a ground to the battery. If all that checks out the following items need to be checked. If the car is an automatic there is a switch in the starter circuit called the "neutral start safety switch".  This prevents the car from starting in gear. This switch may either be defective or just needs adjustment. The ignition switch and the starter solinoid are the net two that could be defective. If you have a voltmeter and are comfortable using it let me know and I will send some test procedures.  

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Brad Sears


All automotive including antique and collectible. However if the car has been modified I can only answer in general terms and maybe get you pointed in the right direction.


Automotive tech instructor. Syndicated auto columnist 1970's though the early 1990's. Syndicated auto radio talk show, Ask Brad About cars, CBS Radio 70's through 90's TV Show "Last Chance Garage" 1980's PBS-TV syndicated. Auto instructor for the following companies: Fram Autolyte Holly Carter AMF Ford Motor University Of Conn Blue Hills Technical School Sugar River Technical Center Grew up in a family garage in Needham Mass and turned wrenches from the age of 14.

Manchester Union Leader, Nashua Telegraph, Motor Service Magazine, Yankee Magazine, Popular Mechanics (Saturday Mechanic early 80's), Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and lots more.

More than I care to remember. Basically Franklin Technical Institute in Boston, Northeastern University, Fitchburg State Teachers College, Tufts University, and a lot of factory schools along the way.

Awards and Honors
Moto Award winner. And much more.

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